Send a gift if you were invited even if you didn't go. WTF?!

posted 3 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: What is your opinion on giving a gift if you do not attend the wedding?
    Its a nice thing to do, I gift even if I think I was only invited out of obligation & I can't go. : (99 votes)
    41 %
    If I don't go they don't get a gift unless we are close. Gifts are not obligations : (120 votes)
    50 %
    Don't get me started on this gift grabby piece of old school ettiquette : (14 votes)
    6 %
    Other. Explain : (9 votes)
    4 %
  • Post # 2
    11593 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    I would never dream of not sending a gift, even a small one, to a couple who invited me to their wedding.  It’s a gesture of support and kindness towards a couple who tried to include you on one of the biggest, most important days of their lives. 

    I’ve never heard of a couple inviting people who have money solely to get gifts.  Most couples have a hard time trimming their guest lists back, not adding extra people for the sake of gifts. 

    Post # 3
    9137 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

    Good etiquette says you’re not obligated to send a gift but if you want to it’s not bad etiquette to send the couple something.  I would only send gift if I am close to the bride and/or groom.

    Post # 4
    42082 posts
    Honey Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    EncoreBridetoBe:  Gifts are never required. They are optional.

    My assumption is that if I receive an invitation to a wedding, I am close enough to that person to send them a gift and my good wishes. The value of the gift is based on my realationship with that person and nothing else.

    I have never received a wedding invitation from someone with whom I was not close enough to send a gift.

    Post # 5
    6446 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: June 2013

    I have always given a gift even if I can’t make it. Then again, I’ve only turned down weddings because I can’t make it- not because I’m not close to the couple.

    I’ve never heard of inviting someone while hoping they turn down the invite but still send a gift. What if they all say yes?

    Post # 6
    642 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

    Gifts are never required – but they are something that show a congratulations to the couple. It’s like a birthday – don’t you give your friends gifts or take them to dinner or out for cocktails for their birthday?

    I’ve only ever been invited to a wedding once where I felt like the only reason I received an invitation was for a gift. I didn’t go, and I didn’t send a gift.

    That being said, I have been invited to weddings that I couldn’t make for whatever reason and I have always sent a gift. These are my friends, whom I support and love, and sending a gift in my place makes me feel good and happy. I don’t break the bank, but then usually if I can’t make the wedding (and I usually only don’t go if it requires a hefty travel fee) I come out slightly ahead anyway.

    Bottom line – don’t send a gift if you don’t want to. No one says you have to. We’ve got people that aren’t coming to our wedding, and we haven’t received a gift from them all. 

    Post # 8
    1230 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2015

    Guests, whether they attend or not, are not required to give gifts. It’s just a nice thing to do, like holding a door open for someone. That being said, if you can’t make it to a wedding, it still would be nice if you gave a small gift, especially if you are close with someone. It’s a personal choice, something up to the discretion of your generosity and budget. No one should begrudge you either way.

    Post # 10
    1670 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2014

    I always send a gift if I’m invited to a wedding and I can’t attend, but not out of obligation, just because it’s a nice thing to do. I have never been invited to the wedding of someone I didn’t know well though! I don’t know what I would do in that case. 

    Post # 11
    2787 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

    I don’t see gifts as obligations.  I enjoy giving people things, even if it is cash.  If I’m invited, I will send something. 

    I think the whole “gift grabby” thing 99% myth.  Most brides are more worried about looking gift grabby than those that are actually gift grabby.  And as a great post I read form a different site said recently “Why would I throw a $10,000 plus party just to recieve gifts.”  The math of the gift grab really doesn’t work. 

    Post # 12
    3735 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    EncoreBridetoBe:  I voted “If I don’t go they don’t get a gift unless we are close. Gifts are not obligations.” I gift if I want to or can do so if I am not going. Otherwise, I do not feel compelled to gift.

    Post # 14
    9525 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2013

    I’ve only declined an invitation to one wedding. I like weddings and make a real effort to try to attend them, if possible. The one I declined was accross the country a couple months before my own wedding and we just couldn’t swing it. I felt bad that I couldn’t make it, even though my friend was very understanding. I sent a gift because I wanted to. 

    I’ve never heard of a real person who invited people just to get more gifts. I only ever hear about theoretical greedy people that would do this, but I’ve never actually met someone that I think would do that. So I assume that people invite people that they want to be at their wedding.


    Honestly, I would assume the increased wedding costs, if they should accept the invitation, wouldn’t cover the possible gifts, so it sounds like a bad idea to me, even if you were trying to be greedy.

    I know I invited a lot of people that I thought probably wouldn’t be able to make it due to distance. But I genuinely hoped that they could make it. I certainly wasn’t inviting them for a present and I hope nobody would think that of me. I’d rather have them any day of the week. 

    Given all that, I would send a gift if I was invited to a wedding that I was unable to attend. Because I would want to celebrate/congratulate my friend/family member who wanted me to share their day with them.

    Post # 15
    8847 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

    I like to send a gift as a congratulatory gesture on the couple’s new marriage. I don’t think I’ve ever had an “obligatory” invite though, and we certainly didn’t extend those at our wedding either. I’ve only been invited to weddings of people I care about and that I wanted to attend.

    The idea of someone inviting everyone they know just to get more gifts is fairly outlandish. 

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